September 22nd, 2008
01:04 PM ET
14 years ago

FBI searches home of lawmaker's son in Palin e-mail hacking

(CNN) - FBI agents investigating the hacking of a personal email account belonging to Alaska governor Sarah Palin have searched the home of the son of a Democratic state legislator, federal law enforcement sources said Monday.

The search occurred late Saturday and early Sunday at the Knoxville home of David Kernell, 20, son of Memphis Democrat Mike Kernell.

Officially, Justice Department spokeswoman Laura Sweeney acknowledged Monday only that "investigative activity occurred" over the weekend. But three sources familiar with the case confirmed the search of Kernell's residence. No documents have been made public showing what equipment or evidence agents had seized.

The sources requested anonymity because the investigation is ongoing and no charges have yet been filed.

Although charges may be filed, none was believed to be imminent, according to the sources.
Palin's email account was hacked, and some of the contents were displayed briefly last week on an Internet website.

Although the displayed messages did not contain significant political disclosures, the McCain-Palin campaign issued a statement calling the incident "a shocking invasion of the governor's privacy and a violation of law."

Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (171 Responses)
  1. Michelle from DA Bronx, NY

    If it turns out that this young man was responsible for the hacking of Sarah Palin's e-mail account, I am sure that the fact that his father is an elected democratic official is purely coincidence. After all it is awidely known that the democratic party is without fault on any thing and it is those mean, nasty, liars of the republican party that are the cause of all the problems in the world.

    September 22, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  2. Bill

    The son of a Democratic Politician. Are we surprised? The Dems will stoop to anything to get elected.

    September 22, 2008 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  3. Rev Wright

    He was just following the Dem Philosphy whats yours is mine.....Kind of like the Obama tax plan

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  4. Sarah Bell

    Oh boy. Here it comes. Wait for it. McCain will blame this on Obama. Just like he blames Obama for the economic crisis. Like he blames Obama for forcing McCain to go negative by not agreeing to town hall meetings. Like he blames Obama for race playing a part in this election. Everything's Obama's fault. We lost vietnam because of Obama....

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  5. Jon

    I love how people are jumping to the conclusion that the kid is a Democrat simply because his father is. I know plenty of families where kids are the complete opposite politically-speaking.

    Moreover, the kid probably did this simply because he saw a challenge. After all, the CW is that kids don't care about politics, right?

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  6. ANGIE

    Watch this will be obamas fault like mccain says the gas prices are obamas fault the current situation on wall street and the economy is obamas fault LETS BE CLEAR SENATOR MCCAIN ITS NOT OBAMAS FAULT THAT YOUR PITBULL IS CORRUPT AND LYING AND WONT FACE THE INVESTIGATION,ITS NOT OBAMAS FAULT YOU SHOWED POOR JUDGEMENT MY FRIEND AND PICKED A CORUPT UNQUALIFIED LYING VP!!!!!!! STOP THE BLAME GAME SIR!

    September 22, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  7. ANGIE


    September 22, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  8. Doug in Renton, WA

    I see some comments on here from people who actually believe this is Obama's fault. Wow! How completely delusional! This was a child's prank folks. Nothing more.

    BTW, this kid has already admitted he did it and even told us how. Why exactly is the FBI knocking down doors over this??? Answer: because Bush and Company have delivered to us a virtual police state. Thank you for voting Republican.

    September 22, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  9. Broad street buddy

    CNN thanks for finally pointing out all of McCains lies with these new fact check stories. Its about time you report the lies instead of repeating the lies in your typical he said she said style of reporting that rarely focuses on the facts.

    September 22, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  10. Frank

    The Democrats are a dirty lot!

    September 22, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  11. kim

    Its been said and I will say it again, if palin and her whooped husband dont have to talk, even though she wants to be vp, then this kid shouldnt either. FYI, does the whole palin not talking remind you of the current white house, I mean, is she going to get that "executive privlage" when shes VP like bush gave cheney? OH well too bad she has no chance in HELL of EVER seeing the inside of the white house.

    September 22, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  12. Ex-Hillary Suporter

    Fact check people. Palin did NOT use her yahoo e-mail for Alaska Government business.
    They said they found one e-mail to a fellow Senator, but the discussion in the e-mail was only about their children.
    If your going to slam someone, at least get your facts straight!

    The Dems Dirty Play, and Lie spreading is only pushing me to the republican side. And I'm sure I'm not the only one!

    September 22, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  13. BV

    You know, when I am conducting important business that I want to keep private, I trust Yahoo! as the place where I know the security is impregnable. I mean, come on! Kudos to Sarah Palin for choosing to run her state using Yahoo accounts rather than FBI protected (and court permissable) FEDERAL e-mail that would have been FAR more protected.
    The real question is: Why wasn't the federally protected e-mail good enough? What did Sarah Palin not want taxpayers or the federal government to SEE in her e-mail?
    This is what happens when you're stupid enough to run your government using Yahoo e-mail accounts. If some 20 year old doofus can hack into your e-mail, how safe does that make you feel about TERRORISTS doing the same thing?
    Sarah Palin: Not ready to lead.

    September 22, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  14. liz radka

    Jeez, it must really suck to have your privacy invaded like that.

    That reminds me of something...its on the tip of my tongue...what is it now...ooooh yeah – FISA!!!!

    I find it hilarious that the Republicans of all people are crying over invasion of privacy.

    September 22, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |

    This is crazyy!!!! Funny how Republicans are going INSANE by the minute trying to blame this on Democrats!!! Tards Tarados y retardados

    September 22, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  16. Cathy

    I'm sure the McCain camp will blame this on Obama.

    September 22, 2008 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  17. Joe

    CNN finally reported something on this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 22, 2008 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  18. John

    Common Democrats, just take it. Your guy got caught with his pants down. It really shows that Democrats does not have any answer to the Sarah Palin's rise to popularity, instead they have to take the dirtiest trick. I hope they finds this guy guilty and sent to jail. He is still innocent until proven guilty.

    September 22, 2008 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  19. FBI what?

    If any regular person had their personal email account hacked, the FBI would almost NEVER be dispatched. Her social status is the only reason why they even care...

    September 22, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  20. d

    obama sucks

    September 22, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  21. mitchell

    as long as he doesn't have to answer a subpoena, then who cares?

    September 22, 2008 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  22. chelle

    I find it interesting how quickly they found this hacker.... took no time at all... Did his parents turn him in? A friend? I mean he hacked a Yahoo account...that has to be a little hard to back trace?

    I still can't believe the woman who wants to be VP would use a private account to conduct official state protections...nothing.... That's who I want knowing federal secrets..... YIKES!!!!!

    September 22, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  23. Shay

    Poor Sarah Palin! She should have been using the government's email. Serves her right! Trying to hide information by using her personal email.

    It appears Republicans nor the media question her use of her personal email to conduct governmental business! WHY IS THAT???

    This woman could be the biggest crook and the Republicans would grin and say she's a hockey mom!!!! So she must be okay!

    PLEASE! Are you people liviing under rocks??????

    September 22, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  24. Bruce

    well this is not as bad as Watergate and the repubs did their best to cover that up so Nixon could get elected. besides that why was the govenor of a state keeping an yahoo email account for government business...does Alaska state governement not have an email? Or oculd it be that she needed this for other reasons, like keeping other informed of governement issues and policies....
    remember I was for the bridge before I was against it....LOL
    She and McCain are a joke....

    September 22, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  25. Carmen

    Yep, it's Obama's fault. Just like the fall of Wall Street is his fault, just like everytime McCain/Palin get caught in one of their obsurd speeches, it suddenly becomes Obama's fault. Give me a break. If all you people spent some of your time 'listening' to what the candidates are saying instead of reading what someone says they said, you could all make better judgement calls on who you should vote for.


    September 22, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
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